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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Is there any type of card that takes a component INPUT and displays it on a PC, preferably within a window on the desktop?


I'm going to try to describe my situation clearly, but all of this is so inherently complicated and confusing that it's difficult.


I have a home theater. I have a PC. It's not an HTPC in that I'm not using the PC as a DVD player or an HD receiver, or any sort of "video source" for the theater. It is an MP3 server, and it's an "automation controller", and I can display a Windows desktop on my front projection screen, but for all practical purposes let's just consider the PC as completely separate from the home theater.


Now, 95% of the time I am sitting at my computer, while my theater and all its expensive toys sits idle. I can CONTROL everything from the computer, via the device control software, but I cannot currently view the video output on my PC.


Let's imagine that I have a "spare" component output from the theater and a component cable running to my PC. What are my options for plugging it into either my PC, or directly into my monitor?


I am driving the LCD display via a DVI cable.

I have an unused analog input on the LCD.


One option might be to convert the component signal to an RGB signal and run it directly into the monitor, bypassing the PC completely, and just toggling back and forth via the front panel button. On the other hand, I'm not sure how to do that, or whether it's even possible to use both inputs (DVI and RGB) at the same time, I don't know. I assume so since there are LED's for A and B, but maybe it will select the "active" input and I don't know what it would do if BOTH were active. I guess I should just plug the RGB cable into the RGB output on my twinhead video card and find out, huh?


Are there other options? Specifically are there any options for running component video, either as component video or transcoded to RGB, into the PC and then displaying that within a window? That would require scaling. The PC is reasonably fast (Athlon 1800+), but not fast enough to play an HD video clip without dropping frames, so that alone seems like a bad omen for displaying HD, and yet the PC wouldn't be decoding MPEG but rather displaying a full bandwidth signal. But at that point I suppose we run into PCI bus bandwidth limitations.


A second option would be an HD card in the PC, but I'd rather just use the HD DirecTV receiver, so I can get HBO and HDNet, and all the analog channels as well.


My video card is a 9000pro, but I'll buy another card if it'll help. I looked at the AIW 9700, but it doesn't have component inputs, so I don't see how it would buy me anything over the 9000.


Thoughts? Ideas?


David
 

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The immersive Holo3D (or H3D) will take component but not HD component.... Limited to 480p....


Going from HD component RGB(HV) to a monitor (bypassing the HTPC) is as simple as a cable with the right plugs (BNC / or HD15 etc... I am guessing HD15 VGA plug if on a LCD projector) but if you are talking about component as is more common from AV gear then you need a transcoder to turn component RGB into VGA RGB (great aint it !!!)... All of these options bypass the HTPC and feed the projector which may or may not be what you want as I cant second guess what your control issues are... ....


If I am being confusing say so and I will try again... I am often accused of talking geek...
 

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Just to try to straighten out that statement a little...


Component video is a three wire signal with YUV (not RGB) color space. VGA is a 5 wire (RGBHV) signal with RGB color space. Most of the transcoder's work is in color space conversion from YUV to RGB (or back), then there is some extra work to get the HV sync in the right place.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yes, I mean component as in YPrPb, not as in RGB, RGBH, or RGBHV. I am also specifically referring to HD component, 1080i to be specific. Oops, just answered my own question. No way will my Samsung LCD display accept a 1080i input. Duh. But let's say it was 720p instead, it's going to be a 16:9 aspect ratio, so it's not going to display right anyway on the 4:3 LCD.


Really what I want is a window, with the output scaled to the window size, so I can have my desktop and still watch the football game or whatever. I know an All-in-Wonder will do that, but I don't want to be limited to analog stations since all the locals are broadcasting in digital now. Actually, a 480i signal would actually be satisfactory for my purposes, but my HD receiver won't output HD and SD simultaneously. But then, I can control that from my PC, so I guess I just need an S-Video or Composite input and a way to display it in a window and I'll have basically what I want. I won't be able to watch anything if someone is downstairs watching something in HD, but I suppose I could live with that limitation too. I'm still going to need an All-in-Wonder to do that though, aren't I, just to get the video inputs?


David
 

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I/O Magic PC PVR capture card and DScaler will capture 480i and deinterlace/scale it in a window or full screen, and it'll only cost you about $20 to $30 bucks, or see the Conexant 23881 thread if you want to be on the bleeding edge ; )
 

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Thanks Ron... Yeah what he said :) !!! Though it gets worse as in Europe they call SCART inputs RGB too... Also component RGB is a valid description of VGA is it not ???


Will the transcoders work from YPrPb to RGBHV instead of thier more usual role (for us) in the other direction ??? Also if only watching on a small screen a clean S-Vid scaled by dScaler for casual viewing may not be too awful (flame suit at the ready)... Of course you want the HD glory on the big screen but for casual checking type stuff it would suffice at a faw lower overal cost....
 

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Yeah, I suppose VGA could be called component RGB, never thought about it that way.


There are transcoders to go from component video to RGBHV, you can't use a standard RGBHV to component transcoder, they are "directional", so to speak.
 

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keydigital and audio authority both sell transcoders that go the way you want them too, well you should check because im not 100%
 
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